Source material: RX-178 MkII

RX-178 MkII, originally uploaded by AndyBartlett.

I dug two of my remaining Bandai Master Grade Gundam models out of the basement tonight; this is my RX-178 MkII. I also pulled out the mecha and backpack for my Nu Gundam (but none of the weapons). Photos of the Nu and another picture of the MkII are up on Flickr; you can check them out in the sidebar or by directly visiting my toy collection gallery on Flickr.

I’m going to try and draw a bunch of pictures of these over the next few days and use their structure as a base for the Transformers pictures I’m also working on. Even though these models don’t have a tremendous amount of detail, working out some of the basic mechanical features and proportions will be hugely beneficial to my Transformers efforts. The Mark II in particular will be a great model to work from, as it’s bulkier than the more-athletic Nu Gundam.

The only bad part about all of this – I now desperately want my Perfect Grade Mark II back…

Optimus Prime sketches: 3/3/2010

This is the two-page sketchbook spread I did at lunch today; I’m continuing to work on Optimus Prime from IDW’s ongoing Transformers comic series. The one on the left was done first and is pretty bad. The head is huge, the arms are too short and since I drew everything else so big I ran out of room for the legs. I gave up on it pretty quickly. The second one is better; head proportions are better, the chest and lower torso seem to work better, too. The arms aren’t good (too short, again), and the legs feel a little stumpy. But it’s a marked improvement over the first attempt, I think.

As I was about halfway through the second sketch, the parallels between the character designs in this book and Gundam became more blatantly clear to me. The basic skeleton and the elbow and knee joints have so many similarities to Gundam mecha that my next step in working on these should’ve been obvious to me a few days ago – drawing the posed, armor-free skeleton of my Master Grade Nu-Gundam model kit. That should provide the perfect base, from a structural perspective, for continuing to learn how to draw these damn things. I just have to dig that mother out of the basement tonight…

This makes me wish like hell that I still had my Perfect Grade RX-178 MkII